Best Harness for Small Dog

Best Dog Harness

Welcoming a dog into your life brings immeasurable joy, and as a responsible pet owner, ensuring their safety and well-being is a top priority. One essential accessory that plays a pivotal role in your canine companion’s comfort and security is the dog harness. With a plethora of options available on the market, navigating the diverse landscape of dog harnesses can be overwhelming.

 This comprehensive guide aims to assist you in making an informed decision by exploring key factors to consider when choosing a harness, the various types available, and recommendations for some of the top-rated options.

Our four-legged friends come in all shapes and sizes, each with its unique personality and needs. Therefore, understanding the intricacies of selecting the right dog harness becomes crucial. From the material’s durability to the harness’s purpose, each aspect contributes to your dog’s overall well-being.

 Join us as we delve into the intricacies of choosing the best dog harness, ensuring that the next time you embark on a walk or adventure with your canine companion, both of you do so in comfort and style.

Key Factors to Consider:

Size and Fit:

Dogs come in various sizes and shapes, and a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t apply when it comes to harnesses. To guarantee optimal comfort and safety, measure your dog’s girth and neck circumference accurately. Most harnesses come with size charts provided by the manufacturer, aiding you in selecting the appropriate size for your furry friend.

Material and Durability:

The quality of the material directly influences the harness’s durability and longevity. Opt for harnesses crafted from high-quality materials such as nylon or polyester, known for their strength and resistance to wear. Additionally, inspect the stitching for reinforcement, ensuring it can withstand the strain of regular use and maintain its integrity over time.


Dogs, like people, come in various shapes and sizes, and a harness should cater to these differences. Look for harnesses with multiple adjustment points, allowing you to customize the fit according to your dog’s unique body shape. This not only enhances comfort but also ensures that the harness stays securely in place during walks or other activities.

Ease of Putting On and Taking Off:

The process of putting on and taking off a harness should be a stress-free experience for both you and your dog. Consider harnesses with features like step-in designs or quick-release buckles for easy application and removal. This is particularly beneficial for dogs that may be anxious or resistant to having a harness put on.

Padding and Comfort:

Your dog’s comfort is paramount, especially during longer walks or activities. Look for harnesses with padded chest and back panels to prevent chafing or discomfort. Mesh or breathable materials are excellent choices, particularly in warmer climates, as they provide adequate ventilation while maintaining a snug fit.

Purpose of Use:

Different dogs have different needs and lifestyles. Consider the primary purpose of the harness – whether it’s for regular walks, training, running, or even car travel. Choose a harness that aligns with your dog’s activities to ensure both functionality and comfort.

Types of Dog Harnesses:

Front-Clip Harness:

Designed with the leash attachment point located on the chest area, front-clip harnesses are effective tools for discouraging pulling behavior. The positioning redirects the dog’s attention toward the owner, promoting better leash manners. This type of harness is particularly beneficial during training sessions and casual walks.

Back-Clip Harness:

Characterized by a leash attachment point on the dog’s back, back-clip harnesses are simple and easy to use. They are suitable for well-behaved dogs that do not excessively pull on the leash. These harnesses provide a comfortable option for leisurely walks and are commonly chosen for dogs that don’t require additional training.

Step-In Harness:

Ideal for dogs that may be apprehensive about having a harness placed over their heads, step-in harnesses allow the dog to step into the harness and then secure it around the back. This design is convenient and minimizes stress for both the dog and the owner during the harnessing process.

Vest Harness:

Providing more coverage and support than standard harnesses, vest harnesses often feature a chest plate that distributes pressure evenly across the chest. This type of harness is beneficial for small dogs or those with respiratory issues, offering added comfort and support during walks.

No-Pull Harness:

Specifically designed to address pulling behavior, no-pull harnesses often have a front-clip attachment to discourage dogs from pulling forward. These harnesses can be instrumental during training sessions, gradually teaching the dog to walk without pulling on the leash.

Adventure/Sport Harness:

For active dogs that enjoy outdoor adventures, sport harnesses are designed to withstand rigorous activities like hiking, running, or even canine sports. They often feature additional attachment points for accessories like water bottles or small bags, making them versatile for various activities.

Car Safety Harness:

Ensuring your dog’s safety during car travel is crucial. Car safety harnesses are designed to secure your dog in place during car rides, preventing them from moving around the vehicle. Some options are crash-tested to provide an additional layer of protection in case of an accident.

Top Picks:

Ruffwear Front Range Harness:

Renowned for its durability and versatility, the Ruffwear Front Range Harness is a top pick for many dog owners. The front-clip design helps in discouraging pulling behavior, making it an excellent choice for training purposes. Its adjustable fit, reflective trim for visibility, and durable materials make it suitable for various activities, from daily walks to outdoor adventures.

Kurgo Tru-Fit Smart Harness:

For dog owners who prioritize safety during car travel, the Kurgo Tru-Fit Smart Harness is a standout option. This harness is not only sturdy and durable for everyday use but also crash-tested to ensure the safety of your canine companion during car rides. It features a padded chest plate for comfort and a simple design for easy on-and-off use.

Puppia Soft Dog Harness:

Combining comfort with style, the Puppia Soft Dog Harness is an excellent choice for small and medium-sized dogs. Known for its soft padding and fashionable designs, this step-in harness is easy to put on and provides a comfortable fit for your furry friend. The breathable mesh fabric ensures your dog stays cool, making it ideal for warmer weather.

Blue-9 Balance Harness:

Designed with the dog’s comfort and natural movement in mind, the Blue-9 Balance Harness is a favorite among dog trainers and enthusiasts. It features multiple adjustment points, allowing for a customized fit, and has a no-pull front-clip option for training purposes. The design ensures that pressure is distributed evenly, reducing the risk of chafing.

Julius-K9 IDC Powerharness:

Known for its robust construction, the Julius-K9 IDC Powerharness is a popular choice for working dogs and larger breeds. The harness is equipped with a handle on the back, providing additional control when needed. With its adjustable straps and reflective elements, this harness is suitable for various activities, from daily walks to more intensive training.

EzyDog Chest Plate Harness:

Engineered with a focus on comfort and support, the EzyDog Chest Plate Harness features a padded chest plate that molds to the shape of your dog for a secure fit. The ergonomic design minimizes strain on the neck and distributes pressure evenly. The harness is also equipped with reflective stitching for visibility in low-light conditions.


Choosing the best dog harness involves considering your dog’s size, activities, and comfort. By focusing on factors like size, material, adjustability, and purpose, you can find the perfect harness to enhance your dog’s well-being and make walks an enjoyable experience for both of you. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for proper use and maintenance of the harness to ensure its longevity and effectiveness.


Q1: Why is a dog harness better than a collar?

A1: Dog harnesses distribute pressure more evenly across the body, reducing the risk of neck injuries and providing better control, especially for dogs prone to pulling.

Q2: How do I measure my dog for a harness?

A2: Measure your dog’s girth (around the widest part of the ribcage) and neck circumference. Refer to the manufacturer’s size chart to choose the appropriate harness size.

Q3: What type of harness is best for a small dog?

A3: Vest harnesses or step-in harnesses with proper padding are ideal for small dogs as they provide support without putting strain on the neck.

Q4: Can I use a harness for car travel?

A4: Yes, certain harnesses are designed for car safety. Look for options with crash-tested features and secure attachments for restraint during car rides.

Q5: How do I clean and maintain a dog harness?

A5: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning. Many harnesses are machine washable or can be wiped down. Regularly check for wear and tear, and replace the harness if needed.

Q6: Can I leave the harness on my dog all the time?

A6: It’s recommended to remove the harness when your dog is indoors for an extended period to allow their skin to breathe. Always check for any signs of irritation or discomfort.

Q7: Are front-clip harnesses suitable for all dogs?

A7: Front-clip harnesses are effective for discouraging pulling, but some dogs may take time to adjust. It’s essential to introduce the harness gradually and use positive reinforcement during walks.

Q8: Can a harness help with leash training?

A8: Yes, certain harness designs, especially front-clip and no-pull options, can assist in training by providing better control and discouraging pulling behavior.

Q9: What features should I look for in a harness for an active dog?

A9: For active dogs, choose a harness with durable materials, secure buckles, and perhaps additional attachment points for accessories. Consider sport or adventure harnesses designed for rigorous activities.

Q10: How often should I check my dog’s harness for proper fit?

A10: Regularly check the fit of the harness, especially for growing puppies. Ensure that it is snug but not too tight, and adjust as needed to accommodate any changes in your dog’s size or weight.


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